One of my favourite things about working at Smart Dolphins is the amount of fun that we have as a team. Nearly every morning starts off with a good laugh or two during our daily huddle, and the fun atmosphere continues throughout our workdays. I can only really speak for myself here, but I do think that everybody genuinely gets out of bed in the morning and is excited to come to the office most days.
That fun culture that we have is fostered by a variety of fun team parties and activities that we have throughout the year, and my favourite event of all was the race that took place two years ago when Dave and Adrian planned the Smartazing Race (obviously modeled after the TV show ‘The Amazing Race’). Teams of two raced around Victoria on foot and by bus to a variety of destinations, with some very hilarious challenges waiting for us. We started at the Smart Dolphins office with a very chaotic scavenger hunt. By the end of the race I had slammed a Tim Hortons coffee and my team mate (Sean) was ill from chugging down a large Slurpee! We used a Slip N Slide, tracked down a disguised Dave at the Mayfair Mall food court, and even sawed through a log.
The only disappointing thing about the race was to learn how slow the rest of my co-workers are, as Sean and I won the race by a mile. I heard some excuses about a late bus from a few of the teams, but they never would have missed the bus that Sean and I were on if they put more effort into their Slurpee drinking. But I digress!
I think that having a friendly and fun workplace is an absolutely critical component to a successful business and I think that great events like this are the key to making that happen for us. If your team isn’t doing something fun and interesting outside of work at least once in a while I’d strongly recommend it, because it pays off exponentially for everyone involved. After all, nobody will ever complain about liking their co-workers. Happier people show more loyalty and they treat your customers excellently without any real effort.
This year we’re finally doing the race again, and I’m really excited to be organizing it along with Sean. Hopefully we can make it as much fun and as punishing as the original Smartazing Race, and hopefully we can administer a little payback to Dave and Adrian when they run it themselves this time around.